Fantasy sports make being a sports fan more fun for those who participate and more irritating for those who don’t. But why shouldn’t we movie fans get our own chance to have fun and irritate others?
Well, now we can! Below are all the rules you’ll need to start your very own Fantasy Awards Season league! You’ll also find links to Google Doc spreadsheets that will help you and your fellow players keep track of their picks and, more importantly, their scores as the season progresses on its way to Oscar night. Just click “File” and then “Make a copy…” to make it your own.
May the odds be ever in your favor!
Suggested Donation – $5
Appropriate for 2 or more players (suggested maximum of 10)
The Game (as it will henceforth be known for purposes of this guide) involves participants (“players”) choosing people and films in various award-season categories with the expectation that your choice (or “pick”) will be nominated or win various designated awards, and add points to your “team”. The player with the most points at the end of the Game wins.
The following eight categories are mandatory:
- Supporting Actor
- Supporting Actress
- Original Screenplay
- Adapted Screenplay
The following five categories are suggested:
- Catch-All (explained below)
- Flex (explained below)
The Catch-All refers to all other categories not in play, and applies only to the Academy Awards.
The Flex is a sort of wild card. Each player can make an additional pick from any category.
Points are earned through industry and critics awards. The current roster of organizations comprises:
- Critics Groups (1 point per nomination; 2 points per win, 1 point for runner-up or top ten inclusion; if no nomination, winning points are still awarded)
- National Board of Review
- New York Film Critics Circle
- Broadcast Film Critics Awards
- Los Angeles Film Critics Association
- Washington DC Area Film Critics Association
- San Francisco Film Critics Circle
- San Diego Film Critics Society
- Toronto Film Critics Association
- Boston Society of Film Critics
- Chicago Film Critics Association
- Vancouver Film Critics Circle
- Austin Film Critics Association
- Utah Film Critics Association
- Indiana Film Journalists Association
- London Film Critics’ Circle
- Nevada Film Critics Society
- Online Film Critics Society
- Oklahoma Film Critics Circle
- Central Ohio Film Critics Association
- Industry (2 points per nomination, 4 points per win, except where noted)
- Independent Spirit Awards
- 3 points per nomination, 5 points per win
- AFI Top Ten (Best Pictures only)
- 4 points per inclusion
- Golden Globes
- Screen Actors Guild
- American Cinema Editors (if including editing category)
- Writers Guild of America
- British Academy of Film and Television Arts
- Producers Guild of America
- American Society of Cinematographers (if including Cinematography category)
- Directors Guild of America
- Independent Spirit Awards
- 5 points per nomination
- 8 points per win
- EXCEPT Catch-All, which is 5 points per win
- 10 point bonus for whoever gets the most points at the actual ceremony
The Game begins on Draft Day.
- Gather the players together
- Put their names into a randomizer to assign picking order
- The first round of drafting will begin with the first player in the order given by the randomizer. The second round will then snake back, and begin with the LAST player.
- Any category can be chosen during each player’s turn, until every player has completed their roster.
- Each pick must be specified according to category and film being awarded. No points will be awarded for anything except that which the member specified. For example, if you have someone for Lead Actor and they win for Supporting, you don’t get any points.
- Each pick can only be chosen once. However, a pick can be chosen across multiple categories. Someone can have a screenplay in adapted, and someone else can have it in original, for example.
- A time limit of one minute per turn is encouraged
- There are no opportunities to change this team for a few weeks. Once each selection is made and the time expired, that is the choice, until trading begins
Points start accumulating with the Independent Spirit Awards, historically the first to announce
- All nomination and winner announcements will be emailed to the group by whoever is able.
- Each member is responsible for his or her own scorekeeping. The honor system is in play.
- In the case of an organization awarding a tie, full points will be awarded to anyone whose pick got in.
- If an organization does not divide screenplay into “original” or “adapted”, all screenplay picks are eligible.
- If an organization does not divide into “supporting” or “lead” or clarify by gender, all acting picks are eligible.
- No points shall be awarded for “genre” categories like “action”, “sci-fi”, or “horror”, nor for sub-categories in like “young” or “newcomer” for acting or “best first film” for directing. “Comedy” is allowed when the selections within do not overlap with “Drama” or any other more general “Best”.
- Trades begin at a date to be determined each season, depending on when various groups schedule their awards. It is generally advised to allow five to seven awards or nominations to be announced before trading begins.
- After this point, any player can abandon one of their picks for another unclaimed pick. This process will result in a five-point deduction per trade.
- Picks may also be traded among players for whatever value each player deems them to be worth, but not for the purpose of “teaming up” against anyone else.
- An email chain will be created in advance of the start of trades. Each trade must be announced in this chain. This will ensure everyone knows when they happen, and help determine who made a trade first if two or more players attempt to select the same pick. One email per trade, and one trade per email.
- Trades are not retroactive. The player will get all points earned for the new pick going forward, but none that pick had previously garnered. Similarly, the player will not lose points earned from their previous pick, but will stop earning from the abandoned pick.
- All trading ceases 30 minutes prior to the announcement of the Academy Award nominations.
- In the event a player removes him-/herself from the Game, their picks will be available for general trading 48 hours (2 days) from the time of their announcement, unless they announce their removal more than 48 hours before trades begin, in which case their picks will remain locked until trading time begins.
- Any points earned by the abandoning player remain theirs, and locked away for good.
Any changes to these rules must be approved by a majority of players. Any addition of new players in a season must be approved by all players returning from the prior season.
Rule changes and new players can be suggested by any current player prior to the beginning of the Draft, at which point the season’s charter will be cemented.